Where Science and Faith Converge
  • The Seven Deadly Sins, Part 3 (of 4)

    October 21, 2014

    This week RTB editor Sandra Dimas and I continue our discussion on the seven deadly sins and the contrasting virtues. Read part 1 and part 2 to see which vices and virtues were already discussed.

    • Problem of Evil
  • The Seven Deadly Sins, Part 2 (of 4)

    October 14, 2014

    In part 1 of this series, I began a discussion with RTB editor Sandra Dimas about the seven deadly sins. This week we delve deeper into the topic by looking at two more sins and their virtuous counterparts.

    • Christian Life
  • The Seven Deadly Sins, Part 1 (of 4)

    October 7, 2014

    Fall is upon us, and with that brings pumpkin spice lattes, the turning of leaves, and the ever-tricky topic of Halloween. RTB editor Sandra Dimas joins me to discuss something far scarier than haunted houses and bubbling cauldrons. Join us for this month-long series on the seven deadly sins.

    • Problem of Evil
  • How a Climatologist Integrates Science and Faith

    September 30, 2014

    This summer climatologist Kevin Birdwell returned to RTB headquarters for his third stint as a visiting scholar. RTB editor Maureen Moser sat down for a chat with Kevin about the role science plays in his faith and his experiences as a Christian apologist.

    • Scientists
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  • Reading As a Stress Reliever

    September 23, 2014

    For the last 35 years of my life I have made it my goal to try to read at least three hours a day. It’s an ambitious objective, and there have certainly been many days that I haven’t achieved it. But overall I’ve been successful in pursuing this intellectual discipline. I even got in trouble with my wife for bringing books on our honeymoon.

    • Learning
  • Catching the Spirit of Philosophy

    September 16, 2014

    Philosophy is unlike any discipline I ever studied in school. The word philosophy (from Greek: phileo, meaning “love,” and sophia, meaning “wisdom”) means the love of wisdom. My first philosophy teachers in college introduced me to the ancient Greek philosophers Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. From these three great founders of Western intellectual thought I caught what I call the spirit of philosophy.

    • Philosophy of Religion
  • Islam and The Middle East Crisis

    September 2, 2014

    Like many people, I have been paying careful attention to the religious and political events transpiring in the Middle East for the past several years. As a student of Islam, I am very interested in this religion’s relationship to radical ideologies that foment violence and terrorism.

    • War
    • Worldviews
  • Use It or Lose It: Intellectual Exercise Can Save Your Mind

    August 26, 2014

    Mortimer Jerome Adler (1902–2001), one of my intellectual heroes, was a philosopher, educator, writer, and editor of the Encyclopædia Britannica series Great Books of the Western World. It’s no wonder, then, that he was broadly educated and one of the best read persons of the twentieth century. Even up to the time of his death at age 98, it appears that he retained his intellectual prowess—no doubt through the sort of mental exercise he encouraged others to practice.2

    • Psychology
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  • Interview with Dr. Travis Campbell

    August 19, 2014

    Through RTB’s Visiting Scholar Program, we often have the pleasure of hosting and working with experts in various fields of study. This summer theologian Dr. Travis Campbell spent two months at RTB headquarters penning articles and recording podcasts. Dr. Campbell received his PhD in philosophical theology from Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia) in 2004, and currently serves as a history teacher at Deerfield-Windsor School in Albany, GA.

    • People of Faith
  • Do You Like Being Alone with Your Thoughts?

    August 12, 2014

    Are you comfortable being alone with your thoughts? Before you answer, recognize what it means. It means extended periods without access to all the “i-Stuff” (iPhones, iPads, iPods, iTunes, etc.). If you are comfortable being alone with your thoughts and untethered from all the electronic gizmos then you are likely in the minority—especially if you are under thirty years old.

    • Christian Life
  • How Can Christians Ease Suffering? Part 3: Hope and Meaning

    August 5, 2014

    Jewish psychiatrist and Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl wrote extensively about the human need for meaning in life.1 In describing his own experiences in Auschwitz, the infamous Nazi death camp, he said that when an inmate living on the precipice of starvation gave up hope he would commonly fall over dead. Frankl’s thesis is that despair is suffering without meaning.

    • Problem of Evil
  • How Can Christians Ease Suffering? Part 2: The Need for Well Wishes

    July 29, 2014

    My historic Christian faith and worldview teach me that God has good reasons for allowing evil, pain, and suffering in the good world that he created. The principal apologetics argument is that God has greater goods that necessarily accompany malevolence and sorrow. Yet I don’t want to be a mere armchair philosopher when it comes to confronting suffering. I want to understand how to effectively ease people’s suffering and then be an agent of God’s peace and comfort to the afflicted. Often the best apologetics argument in favor of the truth of Christianity is believers who seek to love others unconditionally (agape).

    • Problem of Evil
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  • How Can Christians Ease Suffering? Part 1: Reestablishing Security

    July 22, 2014

    Why would a good and all-powerful God allow evil and suffering to exist in the world? This tough question has troubled people throughout every era of history, but I believe the historic Christian worldview provides good answers. The central apologetics answer is that God brings about greater moral and spiritual goods through allowing incidents of evil, pain, and suffering. Yet I also think Christians have the power and ability to help ease people’s suffering and thus be the vehicles of God’s love and concern to the hurting. I’ve addressed the academic answers to the problem of evil. But this series is intended as a practical, pastoral response to the challenging problem of evil, pain, and suffering.

    • Problem of Evil
  • What I Did on Summer Vacation

    July 15, 2014

    Our family has started a new tradition: end-of-the-school-year blowouts. A few weeks ago we left on the first day of summer vacation for the Grand Canyon.

  • A Review of Dinesh D’Souza’s “America”

    July 8, 2014

    D'Souza begins the film with interviews of select and high profile people who hold the first view and connects it with some popular historical authors. He then interviews other people who critique the first view and, thus like him, affirm the second. D'Souza served in the Reagan administration and is, of course, a conservative Republican who is greatly critical of both President Obama and Senator Hillary Clinton.

    • Worldviews
  • How to Choose a History Book

    July 1, 2014

    I make no secret about my love for my country and its history. If you hang around Reflections long enough, you’ll see me address topics like World War II (in which my father fought) and the JFK assassination. But history can be a contentious subject these days, with many views—some reasonable, some decidedly not—vying for the chance to shape the way we see America’s past.

    • Learning
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  • Why We Need Apologetic Pastors, Part 2

    June 24, 2014

    Each Sunday I have something to say to my congregation about the defense of our faith. In fact, I must say something. For example, when Lawrence Krauss was featured in the Australian media for “proving (scientifically) that God did not exist” (see here and here). I had a pastoral duty to address Krauss’ claims before my church. Largely because of what I’ve learned from Reasons to Believe (RTB), I was able to describe Krauss’ assertions in understandable language to my congregation and help them recognize how unconvincing a case these claims were for atheism.

    • General Apologetics
  • Why We Need Apologetic Pastors, Part 1

    June 17, 2014

    Tim Keller, senior pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, cautions, “If pastors fail to do their homework in these areas [science, biblical criticism, philosophy], then there will remain a substantial portion of the population—unfortunately, the most intelligent and therefore most influential people in society, such as doctors, educators, journalists, lawyers, business executives, and so forth—who will remain untouched by their ministry.”

    • General Apologetics
  • Our Philosophical Options According to Albert Camus

    June 10, 2014

    Some of the stories from classical Greek philosophy and mythology leave me with a lingering sense of philosophical angst. In an earlier article, I wrote about how Plato's allegory of the cave always makes me self-conscious of whether I have adequately tested my beliefs and overall world-and-life view. It's difficult to shake the image of sitting in a dark cave while looking at shadows on the wall. But, then, maybe everyone should be so bothered concerning the truthfulness of their deepest beliefs.

    • Worldviews
  • Five Reading Tips to Stretch Your Mind

    June 3, 2014

    The motto for the United Negro College Fund sends chills up my spine whenever I hear it: "A mind is a terrible thing to waste." This simple sentence is foreboding—yet it offers a worthy challenge.

    • Learning
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